Category Archives: young people

‘When I hear The Last Post I think of him’

St John’s Church, Hale, was packed on Saturday night when people of all generations gathered for the Farnham Festival of Remembrance, to pay tribute to all who have suffered and died in armed conflict and to pray for peace in a divided, war-torn world.

The Festival featured the Royal British Legion and other representatives of the armed forces in the form of A Company, 4th Battalion, Princess of Wales’ Royal Regiment; the Sea Cadets of TS Swiftsure1 Battalion Aldershot Army Cadet Force; and 229 (Farnham) Squadron Air Training Corps.

Civilians were represented by the Mayor of Farnham, Cllr Pat Evans; the British Red Cross; St John Ambulance; the Guides; and three local schools – Badshot Lea Infant School, William Cobbett Primary School and Farnham Heath End School.

Music was provided by Farnham Brass Band; TS Swiftsure; the combined Parish choir; Frances Whewell; Wendy Edwards; Liv Jasper;  Sara Burnie; and Dexter and Archie Dedalo-Skilton, Kyle Manson-Hing and Paris McCann, all extraordinarily talented musicians from Farnham Heath End School.

Narration was by Town Crier Jonathan Jones; and a service was led by Rev’ds Hannah Moore and John Morris, with additional reading by Bob Skinner, one of the leaders of Weybourne Community Church. The whole festival had been organised by Simon Alexander, to whom huge thanks and praise must go.

Each brought to the occasion a unique element, from the stirring percussion of the Sea Cadets to the moving tribute of the member of the Army reserve who spoke of his friend ‘Socks’ (so called because one time he forgot his socks when he was deployed) who was killed in Afghanistan. “When I hear The Last Post I think of him” he said.

There was the thoughtful poetry from William Cobbett pupils, the solemnity of the moment when the Guides processed in with the Torch of Remembrance, accompanied by Liv Jasper singing When the Lights Go On Again. There was so much more, including heart-rending poetry from World War One; a simple and beautiful poppy installation by children from Badshot Lea Infant School; memories of World War Two; and the building of a drum altar, draped with the Union Flag and the standard of the Royal British Legion, and topped with a Book of Remembrance of local people who had died in World War Two.

Intertwined with this was the sense that peace is a fragile thing and we must never stop striving and praying for it. In Aftermath, written by Siegfried Sassoon in the year after the end of the ‘war to end all wars’, Bob Skinner read the line: “Do you ever stop and ask, ‘Is it all going to happen again?’”

The young people sharing in the festival and receiving the gift of remembrance from older generations, seemed aware that this gift was a responsibility too and that the hope of peace lay in their hands as much as anyone else’s.

Above all, as prayers were said in front of the drum altar, there was an understanding that , however dark the world is, the suffering God is there in the midst of the darkness.

“Have you forgotten yet?…
Look up, and swear by the green of the spring that you’ll never forget.”
                                                                                    (Siegfried Sassoon, March 1919).

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A Harvest Worship for All

Come, you thankful people come, and celebrate Harvest Festival at Worship for All at St George’s this Sunday (September 29) at 11.30am. And if you can, come early and help prepare the Harvest sheaf.

Worship for All will be celebrating the fruits of the season at a special service and everyone is invited. Please also bring non-perishable food items to donate to Farnham Foodbank. For a list of what is needed, click here.

All welcome!

 

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It’s picnic time for teddy bears at St George’s

Teddy bears and their friends are invited to St George’s, Badshot Lea, tomorrow (Sunday, August 18) for a teddy bears’ picnic at 11.30am.

The picnic, to which all bears and other favourite characters – and their human friends – are invited, will take place as part of the regular Worship for All service which takes place every Sunday at 11.30am.

Lesley Crawley said: “Worship for All is for the whole family and aims to share something of the love of God with all ages, and to be a fun, welcoming service. We hope as many people as possible will round up their bears, big and small, old and young, and come to the teddy bears’ picnic on Sunday.”

Picture: Teddy bear by Dorothe Wouters on Unsplash.

Donate a bike, transform a life

If you have a bike you don’t want, or a bike that needs servicing, or you haven’t got a bike and would like one, come along to Bike Start in Browning Barracks, Alisons Road, Aldershot, and in doing so raise money for The Source, a Christian charity which supports young people who are particularly vulnerable or in challenging circumstances.

Bike Start operates on a Monday and Thursday and, as well as servicing bikes either for individuals or to sell them through eBay, Bike Start can teach you how to maintain a bike. It trains groups and individuals in bike maintenance skills and will run charity days and team bonding days for organisations.

The Source works with 11- to 25-year-olds who are isolated, vulnerable, struggling at school, in trouble with the law, have challenging family relationships, are homeless, in care, live on their own or are young parents. It offers counselling, life coaching, mentoring, anger management programmes and support for young parents.

Ellie Jones, director of The Source, said: “We are so very grateful to everyone who supports BikeStart through donating bikes, buying bikes and coming to us for servicing and repairs.  You have made such a difference to the lives of the young people we support and empower.”

To find out more about BikeStart, donate your old bikes or book your bike service visit www.bikestart.co.uk or call 07596 564428.

 

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Top picture by Chris Becker, Unsplash.